Zoe and the Demon Slayer by Neel Kay
Publication date: October 6th 2014
Genres: Fantasy, New Adult
Twenty-four year old book worm and blogger Zoe Graves was looking forward to the fourth and final instalment of her favourite book saga – The Augustin Chronicles. The evening was meant to be spent in line at the local bookstore with hundreds of other fans, getting the book, maybe even meeting the author, and ultimately spending the night with the dreamiest hero of them all, Lucien de Forest and the love of his life Noomi Augustin.
But somewhere someone thought otherwise.
Confused and hurt after a mugging by the bookstore, Zoe is somehow transported to another world, and suddenly finds herself in a snow-covered landscape witnessing a bloody fight far away from the English summer, and is left to rely on the help from the rather reluctant Matis, who just happen to be out to kill none other than Zoe’s favourite hero and heroine, Lucien and Noomi.
Although convinced she might be in some sort of limbo or maybe even in a coma, Zoe figures that her role in the story is to prevent Matis from killing her all-time favourite fictional couple.
“It must be a very mild climate where you’re from?” Matis said. “In England? I mean, since you weren’t exactly dressed for the Worrockan winters.”
“Well, it’s summer there. Or at least it was when I left.” Zoe’s head snapped up when his words finally sank in, and she was immediately attacked by furious snowflakes stabbing her in the eyes.
“Worrockan?” she repeated. A flood of angry warmth rushed to her cheeks, and her shoulders started to shake uncontrollably. “As in the Kingdom of Worrock?”
Matis glanced at her sideways, his features suddenly set in a guarded grimace. He looked like he’d done last night, suspicious and alert. “Yes?” he said, dragging it out as a questioning threat.
“It’s our capital city.” He stopped and eyeballed her with a grim expression, his dark eyes flashing with what could only be described as mistrust.
Zoe scoffed while blinking excessively, trying hard to prevent the blasted snow from blinding her. “Who the hell are you?” she bellowed.
Thora and Silas both stopped and turned around simultaneously with confusion written all over their faces.
“Worrock is a fictional land,” Zoe continued. She stepped in front of Matis, facing him and stopping him with both hands against his chest.
“It is what?” Matis glanced over her shoulder, presumably at his friends behind her, before he returned his attention towards her furious outbursts.
“This is a setup, isn’t it? Where are the cameras? Where are the bloody cameras? Is it in your clothes?”
Zoe grabbed hold of Matis’ cloak and started looking for small cameras hidden in buttons or in those strange brooches that were holding his cloak in place, and every now and again she’d stop and listen for voices from a control room or something. Somewhere someone was laughing their head off and she wasn’t having it.
“What’s a camera?” Thora wondered.
Matis sighed as he grabbed her wrists and prevented her from searching him any further. He pulled her arms down and pulled her into him, holding her tightly in place as he glared down at her.
“I’m not crazy,” she hissed at him, lifting her chin and arching her eyebrows to let him know she wasn’t afraid of him. “It is you who are making me crazy with all this fake shit. None of this is real. It is impossible!”
“You think this is fake?” Matis released her wrists and quickly folded his hands around her upper arms, actually lifting her up from the ground, and then he tossed her away as if she weighed practically nothing.
“Matis!” Thora exclaimed in shocked horror as Zoe landed in the deep snow a couple of feet away.
“What? She needs to cool the hell down.” He walked past Zoe, who was desperately trying to get back up before the snow had a chance to soak through her clothes, leaving her wet and even colder. As Thora quickly came to her aid and brushed her down, Matis barged on, taking the lead with incredible strides.
“Hey! Wait,” Thora called out.
Silas started to follow Matis, but then stopped and turned halfway around by the sound of Thora’s voice. He looked like he had absolutely no idea what to do.
“Hey sweetheart,” Thora said to Zoe. “You have to keep up. And try not to infuriate Matis too much. He’s not a big people’s person.”
“No, really?” Zoe sputtered sarcastically. “He’s got some serious bipolar issues.” Although she got his point; the snow certainly wasn’t fake.
Introvert, creative, awkward.
Neel Kay lives with her husband and two kids in rural surroundings in the south of Denmark, not far from the German border. She’s a trained milliner, studied English at university, and now works a day job as a web editor. But she’s been writing always.
Love coffee, scarves and sea views. Oh, and butt-kicking heroines who know how to swing a sword and aren’t afraid to get a little dirty.